Breakfast is the most important part of the day. I know you’ve heard that mantra over and over before but it’s true. Sadly enough, not enough people make time for it. Yes I say make time because honestly I don’t believe in the saying “no I don’t have time to eat an apple or munch on a piece of toast while driving or commuting to work”. Do you?
So to help you better understand WHY it’s the most important meal of your day let’s use our logic… Think about the following: What time do you eat your last meal, dessert, snack the night before? Now when you wake up how many hours has it been since you last ate? What if you wait until lunchtime when your famished, now how many hours? 12, 15, 18 plus hours! There is no point in time throughout the rest of the day that you or anyone goes that long without eating something. Sounds crazy when you think about that right? No wonder you’re starving!
So to prevent lunchtime over-eating here are some great, quick and easy suggestions to help you make sure you start your day right:
1. Oatmeal – This will help you power through the morning, no problem. The fiber in oatmeal helps you stay fuller longer and contains a lot of essential vitamins like iron and potassium. Oatmeal may help you reduce your weight and reduce your cholesterol too (Bonus!). Just don’t select any weak package versions containing a little bit of oatmeal and a lot of sugar. Go for the real deal like the oats themselves. If you don’t have time to cook a pot full, Nature’s Path makes an excellent line of organic instant packets and Trader Joe’s sells super tasty steel cut oats in their frozen section. Pop one frozen oatmeal ball in a microwave safe bowl and voila it’s ready to eat in 2 minutes! You can also spice up boring oatmeal with just about anything. Try things like chopped nuts, berries, banana or even a sprinkle of cinnamon does the trick.
2. Greek Yogurt – This option is packed with protein which also will help you stay full longer. Be wary of some of the options that include fruit already whereas pick the wrong brand and you’re staring down 20-30 grams of sugar in one tiny yogurt cup! Go with plain versions and throw in berries, dried fruit, granola (careful here…most granolas pack 200 calories for a measly 1/3 cup! ), agave and nuts to make a nutritiously sustaining breakfast option.
3. Eggs or Egg Whites – Did you know you can microwave an egg? Sure can, thus making work omelets totally doable. Just grab a baggy at home with ingredients you want to add like spinach or veggies, cheese, whatever and toss a cracked egg in a mug with some butter so it doesn’t stick. Pop in a mug in the microwave for 1-2 minutes and you’re all set! Have a little bit of time the night before work? Why not hard boil a few eggs those work just as well for breakfast. Add salt or pepper to taste, even a little bit of light mayo for egg salad. Pair with a slice of nutty or whole grain bread and you’ll be set to power through until lunch.
4. English Muffins – Thomas makes an awesome 100 calorie, 8 grams of fiber, great tasting english muffin. You can eat it with 1/2 serving of peanut butter (100 calories), light cream cheese with /12 sliced banana, or even with chicken sausage. (Trader Joe’s has a really tasty chicken apple sausage I recommend.)
Note: I am not a huge fan of cereal or energy bars which is why you don’t see them mentioned above. They’re great at random times when you’re starving and don’t want to down a bag of chips. While I’m sure there are healthy versions out there, most of them have as much sugar in one bar as a snickers… If I had to pick one i feel Luna bars are the best and the tastiest. In fact I eat a luna bar for dessert with some chamomile tea at least once a month.